The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) on Tuesday condemned “the persecution of political activists” in Zimbabwe and bemoaned the “never-improving situation in the country” while calling on workers to stand up and demand an end to dictatorship, corruption and injustice.
Local and regional observers also castigated the arrest and continued detention of former Highfield MDC MP Munyaradzi Gwisai and other officials, saying it was a reflection of panic by the police and an exhibition of insecurity in the country.
“Cosatu condemns the continued persecution of political activists in Zimbabwe and the never-improving situation in that country. The detention of about 46 activists of the International Socialist Organisation in Harare on baseless charges of plotting to topple the government indicates the state of insecurity in Zimbabwe,” said Cosatu’s international relations secretary Bongani Masuku in a statement.
Cosatu called on Sadc and the African Union to act now in support of democracy and the people’s will in Zimbabwe.
Political analyst John Makumbe said the arrest of activists was an indication of panic by the police.
Gwisai and his fellow detainees are likely to appear in court today after lawyers on Tuesday failed to secure their release.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights on Tuesday said:
“Lawyers were totally denied access by senior police officers and some unidentified men who without any explanation and just cause, ruthlessly and rudely chased away the lawyers at about 20:00 hours.”